Toyota dominates CR list of best used cars with 11 models

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Consumer Reports has named its best used vehicles for the 2004-13 model years, and the Toyota family is a favorite, with 11 vehicles named to the list.

The magazine listed the top small cars, sedans and SUVs that performed well in testing and had above-average reliability.

In the $15,000-to-$20,000 range, the 2012-13 Hyundai Elantra and 2011-13 Subaru Impreza were named the best small used cars to buy. The magazine said that these vehicles were as roomy and comfortable as larger, more expensive vehicles.

The 2011-2012 Toyota Camry, 2010-11 Toyota Camry Hybrid and 2008 Acura TL were selected as the best sedans that could be found on the used-car lot for between $15,000 and $20,000. Fuel economy, reliability and a comfortable ride were all cited as reasons these three vehicles stood out.

In the SUV segment, Consumer Reports tapped the 2006-07 Lexus RX and 2009-10 Subaru Forester as the best. The magazine praised the Forester as having easy access and the best view among the tested SUVs.

Overall, the magazine recommended 28 vehicles, with 11 of them coming from the Toyota, Lexus and Scion brands and six from the Honda and Acura family. Just three vehicles from the Detroit three found it onto the list, including the Pontiac Vibe, which was built and developed with Toyota.

On the flip side, Consumer Reports also compiled a list of 22 used vehicles to avoid -- 16 of which are domestic brand vehicles.

The 1.8-liter Chevrolet Cruze and the Mini Cooper S were called vehicles to avoid because those models, along with the other 20 on the list, have multiple years of much-worse-than-average overall reliability.

You can reach Sean Gagnier at sgagnier@crain.com.


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